Saturday, June 12, 2021

Life in a Dominican Studium before Vatican II (Oakland, 1961)

I posted these videos some ten years ago, but I thought some of our readers, who never saw them, might find them interesting. Enjoy!

The video "Life a Monastery" was broadcast on Oakland Channel 6 in 1961. It shows life in the Western Dominican Province House of Studies, Saint Albert the Great Priory, in Oakland CA.  

VIDEO ONE The film begins with clips of our House of Studies, still the same today in Oakland CA. Then follows film of the Dominican Rite Solemn Mass, the center of the liturgical day at the House of Studies. The film than moves to the class room, and then highlights different aspects of the life. 

A list of those appearing is below the video. The times listed for each of the scenes in the identification list tell where you can find that segment on the video.

The Priory and Grounds (time 0:00) 

Members of the Choir (time 1:35) are identified for Second Video 

 Solemn Mass Ministers (time 2:43) 

Celebrant: Fr. Martin Giannini, O.P. 
Deacon (l): Bro. Aquinas Wall, O.P. 
Subdeacon (r): Bro. Nicholas Prince, O.P. 
Senior Acolyte (r): Bro. Bernard Cranor, O.P. 
Junior Acolyte (l): Bro. Brendan O’Rourke, O.P. 
Thurifer: Bro. Bertrand Pidgeon, O.P.  

Classroom (time 5:07) 

Instructor: Fr. Fabian Parmisano, O.P.  

Student in his Room (time 7:00) 

Bro. Jordan DeMan, O.P.  

Library Stacks (time 7:26) 

Bro. Terence McCabe, O.P. 
Bro. Sean Doherty, O.P. 

Studying in Library (time 8:36) 

Bro. Peter Cole, O.P. 

Student Discussion by the Fire (time 9:11) 

Bro. Philip Valera, O.P. 
Bro. Benedict DeMan, O.P. 
Bro. Bertrand Pidgeon, O.P. 
Bro. Albert Linkogle, O.P. 
Bro. Brendan O'Rourke, O.P. 
Bro. Edmund Ryan, O.P.  

Chess Players (time 9:58) 

Bro. Stephen Coughlin, O.P. 
Bro. Lawrence Ackerman, O.P.  

Music Room (time 10:20) 

Bro. Thomas More McGreevy, O.P. 
Bro. Salvador Calderon, O.P. (Mexican Province) 
 Bro. Francisco Brenes Camocho, O.P. (Spanish Province)  

Drama Practice (time 10:43) 

Director: Bro. Lawrence Ackerman, O.P. 
Bro. Sabastian Haterias, O.P. 
Bro. Gerald Elher, O.P. 
Fr. Fabian Parmisano, O.P.  

Weather Service (time 11:30) 

Bro. Stanislaus Sharlach, O.P. 

Art Studio (time 11:56) 

Bro. Aquinas Wall, O.P. 


The second part of the film highlights the fine arts and the domestic life of the house. It then returns to the Solemn Mass and ends with the chanting of the Exsultet according to the Dominican chant. The credits were actually added later, I am told by Fr. Finbar Hayes.


Music Session (time 0:00) 

Trumpeter: Bro. James Aymong, O.P. 
Guitar: Bro. Louis Fronk, O.P.  

Print Shop (time 0:30) 

Bro. Antoninus Everson, T.O.P.  

Wood Shop (time 1:25) 

Bro. Daniel Thomas, O.P. 
Bro. Raphael Goodfriend, O.P.  

Visiting the Infirm (time 2:39) 

Fr. Bertrand Clyne, O.P. 
Bro. Gregory Lira, O.P.  

Student and Teacher (time 2:60) 

Fr. Leo Thomas, O.P. 
Bro. Giles Wentworth, O.P. 

Priest Leaving for Sunday Supply (time 3:30) 

Student Driver: __________________ 
Fr. Mark McPhee, O.P.  

Gardens (time 4:06) 

__________________ (walking) 
Bro. Matthias Lockett, O.P. (weeding)  

Dominican Sisters at Grotto (time 4:35) 

Sister Assumta Vorndran, O.P. 
Sister Maria Goretti Eder, O.P. 
Sister Nicolina Kohler, O.P. 
Sister Melita Wolf, O.P.  

Sisters in the Kitchen (time 5:02) 

Sister Rosalia Steinbach, O.P. 
Sister Maria Goretti Eder, O.P.  

De Profundis Line and Refectory (time 5:19) 

Fr. William Lewis, O.P. is the Prior

Reader in Refectory (time 6:35) 

Bro. Stephen Coughlin, O.P.  

Friars at Table (time 7:03) 

server: _____________ 
Fr. Dominic Deniz Ortega, O.P. (Province of Spain) 
Fr. Martin Giannini, O.P. 
Fr. Mark McPhee, O.P. 
Fr. John Flannerty, O.P.  

In the Cloister (time 7:40) 

In garden: __________ 
In archway: Bro. Thomas Thierman, T.O.P.  

The Choir at Mass (time 8:35) 

The Cantors (left to right) 

Bro. Francisco Brenes Camacho, O.P. (Spanish Province) 
Bro. Louis Fronk, O.P. 
Bro. Bertrand Pidgeon, O.P. 
Bro. James Aymong, O.P. 

Front Row on Left (left to right) 

Bro. Daniel Thomas, O.P. 
Bro. Gregory Lira, O.P. 
Bro. Antoninus Everson, T.O.P. 
Bro. Albert Linkogle, O.P. 
Bro. Lawrence Ackerman, O.P. 
Bro. Augustine Hartman, O.P. 
Bro. Anthony Chavez, O.P. 
Bro. Patrick Labelle, O.P. 
Bro. Bede Wilks, O.P. 
Bro. Philip Valera, O.P. 
Fr. Peter Miles, O.P.  

Back Row on Left (left to right)


Front Row on Right (left to right)

Bro. Sebastian Haterias, O.P. 
Bro. Gerard Elher, O.P. 
Bro. Giles Wentworth, O.P. 
Bro. Stephen Coughlin, O.P. 
Bro. Edmund Ryan, O.P. 
Bro. Frederick Narberes, O.P. 
Bro. Adrian Rivera (lay brother postulant)  

Back Row on Right 

[Empty stalls] 
Bro. Terence McCabe, O.P.  

Solemn Mass (time 10:00) ministers are identified for first video  

The Exsultet (time 11:34) 

Bro. Kieran Healy, O.P.
Credits (time 14:00) 
Fr. Mark McPhee, O.P. 
Fr. Fabian Parmisano, O.P. 
Fr. Finbar Hayes, O.P. 
Fr. Leo Thomas, O.P. 

I thank Bro. Lupe for his help with the production of this video and Fr. Edmund Ryan for his help in identifying the friars. I also thank the many friars who have written me with corrections and new identifications.